It's time for a little balance, says Mike Darnell of Fox, and that balance comes in the form of Kara DioGuardi.
DioGuardi is a Grammy-nominated songwriter will be joining Paula, Simon and Randy when "American Idol" begins its eight season next January.
"For the past seven seasons, Paula has had to endure the experience of being the only woman at the judges' table," says Darnell. "She's been as an island of consideration and gentle criticism between Randy and Simon, offering her invaluable expertise as a performer and number one artist to the thousands who have competed on American Idol. With Kara by her side, Paula finally has some back-up and now there is going to be a lot more 'girl power' on the show."
One of the industry's most sought after songwriters and producers, DioGuardi's songs have appeared on more than 100 million records. Her songs have been recorded by Grammy award-winning artists including Kelly Clarkson, Christina Aguilera, Gwen Stefani, Celine Dion, Faith Hill, Carrie Underwood, Santana, and Pink. Scores of major recording artists including Britney Spears, Avril Lavigne, Pussycat Dolls, Miley Cyrus, The Jonas Brothers, Natasha Bedingfield, Jewel, Ashley Tisdale, Katharine McPhee, Taylor Hicks, Bo Bice, Clay Aiken, Ashlee Simpson, Hilary Duff, Jessica Simpson, Kylie Minogue, Enrique Iglesias, Nick Lachey and Marc Anthony have also released DioGuardi's songs.
"I am a working songwriter in the music business," say DioGuardi. "I find talent, I sign talent. I co-own a publishing company where we have 13 to 15 writers at any given time that we represent. I'm in the music business in terms of the day of day of it, finding talent, nurturing talent, writing songs, producing songs. So I think I bring a unique perspective to the business because I'm also somebody who was a singer in the beginning of my career and used my voice to leverage my way into the rooms with some of the biggest music producers out there and to cut records."
Though this will be DioGuardi's first time acting as a judge, she's already has a history with American Idol.
"I've written a bunch of songs that have been performed and released by Idols. I co-wrote "Walk Away" from Kelly Clarkson and with Kelly Clarkson. I co-wrote the Real Thing for Bo Bice and actually won two BMI Awards they were extremely performed on the radio. I've written with Katherine McPhee and Clay Aiken I co-wrote The Way. Oh and I actually have a song now on the David Archuleta CD that's coming out, I think soon. I co-wrote with David Cook. So hopefully he'll use that song too, so two songs on the new Idols."
So what will the new judge be looking for in an American Idol?
"I am gonna be looking for a unique spin," says Kara. "Somebody who has something to say, who has a unique look; who has a great voice; a unique tone; isn't trying to imitate everybody else that's out there. And, has incredible self-confidence because anybody who has ever really made it, steps on that stage and they own it from the minute they step out there. So I think it's important that you know they really be themselves and that they're interesting and that they keep me engaged."
Kara's looking forward to returning to her home town of New York for her first Idol auditions and then it's onward and upward, looking for the best the US has to offer.
"I think what it takes to be a famous performer is somebody who doesn't care what anyone thinks, who loses themselves in the moment, who is authentic, real, believable and follows their heart. Some of the greatest songs out there are the ones that connect with us because we all have that experience and it's the same thing with artistry. When you are looking at someone who is just an amazing performer its cause you really feel what they are putting out there and it becomes almost your own experience and it's believable. You know, that's what I hope that we find this season, cause it's really about being a rock star."
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